NASA Picture of the Day: Major Volcano Erupts on Jupiter’s Moon, Io [PHOTO]

(Photo : Reuters) Jupiter's moon Io, the most volcanic body in the solar system, is seen in front of Jupiter's cloudy atmosphere in this image made from NASA's Galileo spacecraft and released October 24. The image, which is composed of data taken in the near-infrared, green and violet filters of Galileo's solid-state imaging camera and has been enhanced, is centered on the side of Io that always faces away from Jupiter. The black and bright red materials show the most recent volcanic deposits, probably no more than a few years old. The active volcano Prometheus is seen near the right-center of the disk.

NASA witnessed a massive volcano eruption on Jupiter's moon, Io. 

The moon is the innermost of Jupiter's four largest moons, and is the most volcanically active object in the Solar System. According to Universe Today, Io has 240 active regions.

Io's activity is a result of tidal heating from friction generated within Io's interior as it is pulled between Jupiter and the other moons, Europa, Ganymede and Callisto. Volcanos may dispel sulfur or sulfur dioxide as high as 300 miles above the surface.

Professor of Astronomy Dr. Imke de Pater at the University of California in Berkeley saw the explosion while using a Keck II telescope on Mauna Kea in Hawaii on August 15th, 2013.

"When you are right at the telescope and see the data, this is something you can see immediately, especially with a big eruption like that," de Pater told Universe Today.

The eruption is one of the top 10 most powerful witnessed on the moon. "It is a very energetic eruption that covers over a 30 square kilometer area," de Pater said. "For Earth, that is big, and for Io it is very big too. It really is one of the biggest eruptions we have seen."

Click here to see the photo. 



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